FDA Blames Media For Unapproved Herbal Products
“I think that all of us know, we can see a herbal advertisement making claims that right from the beginning of the advert you would know that there is no way FDA would approve such an advert, yet it goes to the media station and they go and air it irrespective of crosscheck from the FDA whether it has been approved or not by the FDA. I would say to some extent, I put the blame on the media. I don't think any advertiser can walk into a media station and slot his/her advertisement into their medium unless you give approval.”
Head of Communications for the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), James Lartey said the media is to blame for the situation.
He noted that failure on the part of media houses to demand FDA certifications from advertisers especially those who deal in herbal products before airing them is the cause of the influx of the unapproved ones.
Some doctors have often expressed worry about the influx of herbal concoctions on the market which they say increase the risks of some diseases.
But the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyemang Manu tasked the Authority to examine all advertisements, especially those on herbal medicines, to be sure they are approved by the Authority.
“It is worrying that almost every radio or TV station air advertisements on herbal medicines and I wonder whether those adverts have been approved by the FDA in view of the claims that are made within those adverts.”
“Let us remember that advertisements are very influential and have the potential of affecting listeners positively or negatively. Therefore, a misleading advertisement can have serious repercussions,” the Health Minister said in a speech read on his behalf during the unveiling of the new FDA logo in Accra on Tuesday.
He also called on the Authority to ensure effective post-market surveillance to ensure that products on the market were safe, efficacious and of good quality.
The sector minister urges FDA to liaise with relevant institutions like the Advertising Association of Ghana, the National Media Commission, the Ghana Journalists Association, the Ghana Independent Broadcasting Association, the BNI, the Police and other relevant institutions, to deal with the canker.